Obama Raises GOP Ire With Plan to Return Part of Salary

The president is being hypocritical in plans to give back 5 percent of his salary, Republicans say.

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President Barack Obama urges Congress to take action on measures to protect children from gun violence, Thursday, March 28, 2013, while speaking in the East Room of the White House in Washington.

Republicans are mocking President Obama's plan to return 5 percent of his $400,000 annual salary to the U.S. Treasury, charging that it is a hollow and hypocritical gesture.

White House officials say Obama will return the 5 percent – nearly $1,700 per month – in order to share the sacrifice being required of federal workers under the current round of budget cuts known as the sequester.

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But a spokeswoman for the Republican National Committee said Obama is being hypocritical because he is pledging to give back the money but then boarding "Air Force One to take a $180k per HOUR ride to fundraise with the same fat cat millionaires and billionaires he campaigned against."

The RNC also released a video ridiculing Obama for demanding that the rich pay more in taxes but then soliciting contributions from "billionaire's row."

"On the campaign trail, Obama's favorite applause line was attacking the very people he's now begging for campaign cash – hypocrisy at its finest," says Reince Priebus, the RNC chairman.

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Obama is on a two-day fundraising trip in northern California. One event was held Wednesday at the San Francisco home of billionaires Ann and Gordon Getty, costing $32,400 for each attendee. Obama is also scheduled to attend a brunch Thursday at the Atherton, Calif., home of wealthy investor Mark Heising, also costing $32,400 per person.

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  • Ken Walsh covers the White House and politics for U.S. News. He writes the daily blog "Ken Walsh's Washington" for usnews.com, and is the author of "The Presidency" column for the U.S. News Weekly. He can be reached at kwalsh@usnews.com, and followed on Facebook and Twitter.